Recipe: "Caribbean Pork and Plaintain Hash"

There's a reason I keep my old issues of "Cooking Light" stuffed into a cupboard in the kitchen. When I'm bored by the same macaroni-and-cheese-fare I always fix, I reach in, randomly grab an issue and head to straight to the "Dinner Tonight" feature.

This gives me four quick and easy ideas for dinner, like this recipe for "Caribbean Pork and Plantain Hash." It's a great way to get our of a rut without getting out too many ingredients and investing too much time into dinner.

Yield: 4 servings

1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce

3/4 teaspoon salt, divided

3/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

1 pound pork tenderloin trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon butter

1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped onion

1 cup chopped green bell pepper

2 large yellow plaintains chopped (about 3 cups)

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon habanero hot pepper sauce

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Combine soy sauce, 1/4 teaspoon salt, thyme, and next four ingredients (through pork); toss well to coat.

Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork mixture; saute four minutes or until done.

Remove from pan; keep warm. Add the remaining one tablespoon oil and butter to pan. Add onion, bell pepper, plantains, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and black pepper; cook six minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in garlic; saute two minutes or until plantains are tender. Drizzle with hot sauce, and stir well. Sprinkle with cilantro.

-- Emily Simnitt